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Updated: March 11, 2012 23:42 IST

Rogue U.S. soldier kills 16 in Afghanistan

AFP
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A man points to bloodstains, where Afghans were killed by a U.S. service member, in Panjwai, Kandahar province, Afghanistan, on Sunday.
AP
A man points to bloodstains, where Afghans were killed by a U.S. service member, in Panjwai, Kandahar province, Afghanistan, on Sunday.

Opens fire on three houses in two villages

Sixteen Afghans were killed by a rogue American soldier who walked off his base and opened fire on them in their homes in the early hours of Sunday, said Afghan and Western sources.

An AFP reporter counted 16 bodies — including women and children — in three houses in two villages of Panjwayi district in the southern province of Kandahar.

A senior Afghan government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, put the death toll at 15 — “nine children, three women and three men are dead”, he said, adding that Afghan President Hamid Karzai was “very angry”.

The shooting is likely to worsen relations between Washington and Kabul, which already plunged to an all-time low last month after the burning of Korans at a military base near the Afghan capital.

NATO's International Security Assistance Force said it had arrested a soldier “in connection to an incident that resulted in Afghan casualties in Kandahar province”, without giving a figure for the dead or wounded.

“In one house, I saw 10 people, including women and children killed and burned in one room. Another woman was lying dead at the entrance of the house,” the AFP reporter said from the scene. Among the dead were “at least two children, two or three years old”. One other person died in a second house in Alkozai village while four more were killed in nearby Najeeban, he said.

In one house, an elderly woman screamed: “May God kill the only son of Karzai, so he feels what we feel.”

U.S. ‘regrets'

The deputy commander of U.S.-led NATO forces, Lieutenant General Adrian Bradshaw, expressed “profound regrets and dismay at the actions apparently taken by one coalition member in Kandahar province”.

Afghan and Western sources said the rampage began after a U.S. soldier walked off his base in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The incident comes just weeks after the Koran burning ignited violent anti-U.S. demonstrations in which some 40 people died. During the protests, six American troops were killed when Afghan soldiers turned their weapons on their allies.

But there was no word on what might have motivated the soldier's actions in Kandahar.

The Afghan government official said Mr. Karzai had dispatched the Army Chief of Staff to head an investigation into the incident.

Washington and Kabul are negotiating a long-term strategic partnership deal governing their relations after U.S.-led combat troops pull out in 2014.

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Mr.Noel Jones has valid point. Just as killing of innocent afghans by rogue soldier does not make USA responsible , so does Fort Hood shooting by Nidal Hasan does not put blame on Islam. Just as burning a holy book a despicable act burning of USA flag is also a despicable act.But sane mindedness rarely prevails

from:  Daniel Manohar
Posted on: Mar 13, 2012 at 15:14 IST

My dear Noel Jones you are mixing different flavors in one glass. Here
is the fact.
The Attorney General Eric Holder didn't charged him for any terrorist
act.One terrorism analyst believed Hasan was "acting individually
because he doesn't want to deploy overseas".[11] Hasan has been
charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of
attempted murder.[12][13] An Article 32 hearing, which recommended
that Charges against Hasan be referred to a General Court Martial,
began on 12 October 2010. Hasan was arraigned on July 20, 2011 and
trial was scheduled for March 2012.
And Dear Noel this is Ethnic cleansing. Your Comment is to simply
justify this heinous act.

from:  Md Adil Rais
Posted on: Mar 13, 2012 at 01:00 IST

@Noel.A crude attempt to justify a heinous atrocity. This game of justifying your crime by some previous crime can easily go back many centuries. I don't think a US court would ever acquit an African-American on the grounds that his forefathers were enslaved in US.

from:  Tipu Qaimkhani
Posted on: Mar 12, 2012 at 23:20 IST

Before anti-Americanism hits stratosphere . Humanity must also take note that such act was
earlier committed by Nidal Malik Hasan(United States Army officer) of the infamous Fort
Hood shooting where 13 Americans were killed.

from:  Noel jones
Posted on: Mar 12, 2012 at 14:07 IST

US always had a history of such incidents. its not only US might be any country like China in Tibet.
Countries like US, UK, China or NATO forces must learn to deal other countries with diplomatic talks rather waging war.
the Afghanistan war was never on Success. its true the US has helped the mankind to buy peace for sometime.
But WAR is no means of solution. Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt now IRAN.
If US or Allies doesn't learn its lessons from whats happening. This Bloody thing will never end.

from:  Sunil Shetty
Posted on: Mar 12, 2012 at 09:43 IST

this is not the first time Americans have killed more Afghans than Taliban. i saw the pic of one boy who was injured and still alive, i couldn't stop crying.

from:  Rahimullah Amin
Posted on: Mar 12, 2012 at 01:07 IST

NATO must take stringent action against this crime against humanity.
Otherwise it will turnout to be another siberinca(Bosnia). Where armed
forces routinely open fire on unarmed & innocent villagers. In any war
zone there are atrocities to the people living there. The modern society
must work to eradicate such atrocities to built confidence in peoples
mind. Time to time such cases may brainwash the young minds leading to
an endless conflict.

from:  Md Adil Rais
Posted on: Mar 12, 2012 at 00:42 IST
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